Community buildings in our local places across Kirklees are vitally important hubs for communities, offering social, mental and physical support to citizens. Kirklees Council wants support the re-opening of these buildings in a safe and practical way as part of our recovery.
Community Buildings Webinar
On Tuesday 14th July 2020 from 6.30pm to 8pm Kirklees Council hosted a webinar to provide guidance on how to safely re-open community buildings, sharing advice about the things to consider, including how to decide when is the right time to re-open. We also discussed the lessons learnt from community buildings that have stayed open during lockdown. This learning can help everyone with the re-opening of community buildings in our local places.
We are living through history – the Covid-19 pandemic has touched everyone’s lives and has made big changes to some.
Kirklees Museums and Galleries want to know more about your experiences, both positive and negative. We collect objects and the stories connected to them in order to help people in the future understand events and how they have affected people in local places across Kirklees.
So, what could we collect? Well, we are particularly interested in objects which say something about the pandemic locally. Are you a volunteer or keyworker who has experienced life changing times? Has home-working meant big changes for you, or perhaps you’ve had to adapt and spend your time in a different way? Perhaps you have a unique way of counting the days of lockdown, or maybe you have benefitted from the kindness of others supporting you. Perhaps you are a local business who are now manufacturing things for the NHS.
We are sure there will be many different ideas that capture an important part of this crisis. However, we cannot collect everything that we’re offered, as we have very limited resources and every object needs to fit with our collections policy. But we would like to hear from you if you have an object with a story, which really says something important about the Covid-19 pandemic and its effect on people in our local places.
How to contribute
Please contact email@example.com if you have any objects you would like to donate to Kirklees Museums and Galleries which you think will help to tell the story of the pandemic to future generations. Please also email us if you would like to read our full Collections Policy.
Our colleagues at West Yorkshire Archives are interested in collecting any paper-based items which tell a story about the local response in Kirklees – anything from diaries to NHS rainbows.
Kirklees Libraries service have a range of free books, discarded from their stock, that they are making available to a number of community organisations including Mutual Aid Groups, to share with members of your community who would benefit from a new read.
These books are ones which are no longer used by libraries but are still in good condition. The intention is to gift them to community groups who are working with people in need, are shielding or who would not otherwise have access to them. They are not intended to be loaned and returned, just given away.
There are many different genres of books on offer – Crime, Thriller, Love and Romance, Mills & Boon, Westerns, General, Audio (general) or Large print (including crime and love and romance).
If you would like Kirklees Libraries to gift you some boxes of books to simply give away to people in your community, and you have the logistics in place to be able to do this, here’s how.
Ask in your email for the genre of books required (they will be boxed)
Get your email to Luc no later than Sunday 28th June 2020 (extended deadline)
How to get your books
Your books will be available for collection from Huddersfield Library on 3rd July 2020
Your books will have been quarantined for 72 hours prior to collection
You will be asked to collect your books at a set time, in order to maintain social distancing.
Ensure that when passing these books on to members of your community you have infection control measures in place.
This is a one-time offer and not a part of our normal library service, and is not intended to replace the library service (which will be resuming at some point in the hopefully not too distant future) but to release some literature in to our communities for the benefit of our residents and neighbours.
Third Sector Leaders Kirklees are hosting an online event on Thursday 25th June 2020 for mutual aid groups and other voluntary groups in Kirklees. You can get help with information about funding, volunteering and support.
If you’ve been helping run a Mutual Aid Group or other voluntary group over the last few months, you might now be wondering about how to develop your group and keep it going for the benefit of your community. This event will help you explore what the possibilities and options are, enabling you to continue the invaluable work you have been doing.
You will no doubt have already faced operational challenges over the last few months. Third Sector Leaders Kirklees recognise this and through working in partnership with Kirklees Council’s Democracy team and other experts, will be able to support you with a considerable range of advice and insights to take your next steps.
The meeting will take place on Zoom, from 6pm to 7.30pm.
Domestic abuse organisations have seen increased household tension and domestic violence due to lockdown restrictions, economic stress and fears about the Coronavirus. Increased isolation could also create an increase in abuse.
It is timely that Yorkshire Children’s Centre can announce they have launched their new telephone helpline for perpetrators of domestic abuse: “I need help to stop” – 07849 398711.
Support is available for those who wish to address their abusive behaviour to improve the lives of their partners, ex-partners and children. Domestic abuse includes physical violence, emotional abuse or any other form of coercive control.
The helpline is anonymous and confidential and provides guidance, support and advice in developing healthy relationships. If agreeable, callers can also gain further support through an online webchat session.
It’s only in recent times that stories of the Windrush Generation have begun to be shared more widely, as an important part of British history. Since 2018 there has been an official Windrush Day to acknowledge and celebrate not only the journeys made from the Caribbean but also the cultural impact the Windrush Generation made, which has so enriched our local communities.
The 22nd June is Windrush Day and whilst planned local events and exhibitions can’t go ahead, this hasn’t stopped a range of partners collaborating on an e-resource pack, which is full of useful information.
This online pack includes history and facts, stories and recollections, book recommendations and reviews for both adults and children.
You can find out how to become a member of the Kirklees Libraries, which will then give you access to a special collection of e-books with stories, biographies, cookery and poetry.
The pack also contains lots of links to fun activities, with access to resources for making decorations, traditional Caribbean cooking recipes and crafts.
Interested in music? You can also find out about the huge contribution the Windrush Generation has made to popular music.
The online resources have been brought to you by the Jamaica National Council Huddersfield, the BAME Network and the West Yorkshire Archive Service.
The challenges people have faced over the last few months have not fazed or diminished our sense of community. Neighbourliness is thriving week after week in our local places, where we’re helping each other and finding new ways of connecting.
A way we can all celebrate community and neighbourliness is by joining in with the Great Get Together, which takes place from 19th to 21st June 2020. Whilst there won’t be any public gatherings or large events this year, we can all reach out across the weekend with acts of compassion and connection in a safe way to celebrate the power of community.
On your street
Here are just a few of the fun activities you could help arrange with neighbours on your street over the weekend:
Community singalong: pick a song, share lyrics, and schedule a time to step outside and sing together.
Have your own Bake-Off: bake and present your masterpiece to your community for judging
Share a garden: grow one type of vegetable and get the community to do the same. Share what you grow and perhaps use it to make the same recipe.
Design a Treasure Hunt (think of things to hide in your windows and gardens that children could find on their daily walks).
Wishing Trees: encourage everyone to leave a wish for the future.
Community recipe book: share a recipe per household and create a recipe book.
There are lots more ideas on the Great Get Together website:
More in Common Batley & Spen are part of the Jo Cox Foundation and remain the key partner in organising the Great Get Together. The group works year round to build strong and compassionate communities where everyone has a sense of identity and belonging. They are also a vital part of the community response in Kirklees, as one of our community anchor organisations.
There will be a More In Common assembly for schools in collaboration with a number of local head teachers on Friday 19th June. On Saturday 20 June, a regular Community Service event goes virtual with a community quiz to follow. Details of how to watch and take part in these, and many other events organised locally in the community will be shared on social media channels.
There is a planned digital art projection in Dewsbury town centre, featuring the work of artist, Ian Berry and messages of thanks, thoughts, hopes and prayers from people across Kirklees. Ian’s work and shared local images will be projected onto a building in Dewsbury town centre, on the evening of Friday 19th June after dark. The public are not being encouraged to attend in view of social distancing. Instead, a film will be created that will be shared on social media platforms. There is also a longer term plan for an outdoor exhibition to support the re-opening of local towns following lockdown.
Run for Jo
On Sunday 21st June people across the country are being encouraged to take part in the Run for Jo by doing a 2.5km or 6.5km run in their own community. Hundreds of people are also training for the run on the Strava running community.
It is important to remember that this week is also Loneliness Awareness Week. You might want to consider doing something to make sure those neighbours who are more isolated or unable to participate outside can remain a part of your community. Here are a few virtual activities you can organise:
Take a walk for someone who can’t – call someone isolated on your daily walk and describe what you see, smell, hear and feel.
Organise a telephone tree to reach those most isolated.
Call an old friend.
Host an album listening party.
Have a virtual Open Mic night.
Loneliness Awareness Week
Loneliness Awareness Week is about encouraging people to speak about it openly and understand loneliness, one conversation at a time.
Many mutual aid and community volunteers have recently found themselves supporting individuals who don’t have a working fridge, cooker or freezer.
The Yorkshire Children’s Centres Pass It On shops sell donated and reconditioned white goods at a reduced price. They have a range of fridge freezers as well as new electric cookers.
Whilst the Pass It On shops have not been open, the Yorkshire Children’s Centre have been running a buy and collect service. The shops are now reopening, but in small steps so this can be done safely – so please check their website for the latest updates.
How the goods are purchased may vary from circumstance to circumstance. We recommend speaking to the Local Welfare Provision team at Kirklees Council for advice and assessment if the person who you are supporting is struggling financially and you think they may be entitled to benefits.
Pass It On also offer new and donated beds along with various other furniture items.
There’s a chance that even after the coronavirus lockdown ends, the way we communicate, interact with one another and learn will have changed significantly. You may have already become more familiar with tools like Zoom to video call your family and friends, but what about using digital tools for work as well?
Thornton Lodge Action Group have teamed up with the Good Things Foundation and Google to offer a chance for individuals to gain digital skills using a range of online tools. They are offering free training to explore using video tools for meetings, apps for managing projects and tips on how to adapt to remote working.
The opportunity to access this digital learning is open to everyone. Whether you’re employed, unemployed, furloughed or self-employed, everyone is eligible.
You will be able to learn at your own pace and as it is all online you can do this from your own home.
If you’re unsure about what you want to learn or where to start, a member of staff from Thornton Lodge Action Group will call you to complete an initial 5 minute questionnaire to help set you off in the right direction, focused on the area of the digital world you’re most interested to learn about.
How to begin your digital learning journey
If you have an idea of what you want to learn already, you can dive straight in by visiting: